Every homeowner should know what, exactly, is involved in a legitimate roof estimate. This way, you won’t ally with a shady roofing company that provides an alleged estimate that falls short of what it really should be. Far too many homeowners are willing to accept an estimate with a dollar amount and little else.
Before you get the estimate you can usually find out from calling a roofing company or checking their website whether or not they offer a free roof estimate. You can contact multiple roofing companies in order to compare and contrast which roofer has the best new roof estimate or roof repair estimate for you and your home.
This is not to say every single roof estimate should be exactly the same. There will certainly be some differences between each roofing company’s estimates. However, these differences should not be significant. Let’s take a look at what a legitimate roof estimate from an elite roofing company should include.
Focus on Content Over Form in a Roof Estimate
A roof estimate jotted down on a sheet of paper might not be inferior to a typed-out estimate on a couple sheets of crisp paper that recently passed through the printer. What matters most is the content of the estimate rather than its form. As long as the roof estimate contains the critically important elements (including signatures), it will suffice regardless of the form in which it is presented.
Never sign a contract with a roofer that HAS NOT performed an inspection of your roof!
What Are the Basics of a Roof Estimate?
Knowing the basics of what should be included in your roof repair or roof replacement estimate can save you from frustration later. The following list is not exhaustive of what can be in your estimate since they vary from roofing company to roofing company, but it does have the basics.
- Payment information – such as payment due dates and accepted payment methods.
- Approximated Timeline– what is the projected timeline from start to finish on your roofing project.
- Costs – the estimated cost of removing the old roof, hauling away debris, renting a dumpster, and heavy equipment (if it’s necessary).
- Roof estimate materials – this should be the cost of all materials including roof covering, drip edges, flashing, underlayment, gutters, nails, new ventilation, etc.
- Full description of work – there should be a list of the work being done to the roof.
- Guarantees and expectations of work – they should list guarantees of workmanship throughout and guarantees of cleanup afterwards.
- Warranty – the warranty information for materials and workmanship.
- Insurance and licensing information – you want to make sure the contractor has insurance and a contractor’s license.
- Provisions in a roof estimate – make sure there is a section for add-on costs that can lead to additional charges.
- A means for exit – both sides need to have a way to terminate the agreement without incurring penalties under certain circumstances.
What Should Be Included on Your Roof Estimate?
Knowing the basics is just the start. You also need to know why these should be included in your roof estimate? You don’t want to have all of this time and money invested and not know why. Knowing this can help you figure out which roofing companies are legitimate and which roofing companies are trying to swindle you.
- Payment Information. Every roof estimate should explain which parties are responsible for specific portions of the roof project. If specific aspects of the roofing project will be outsourced to other companies, these parties and responsibilities must be identified in detail within the estimate. Every last detail of the payment terms should be explained in-depth including information about down payments, progress payments, end payment, and payment methods. Furthermore, the estimate should include a provision for you to hold back the final payment until you are completely satisfied with the job.
- Approximated Timeline. The estimate must spell out the project’s start date and completion date. This can change if more damage is found once the roof repair starts.
- Costs. The roof estimate should include the cost of materials and labor. Even the cost for the pulling of permits should be noted. If the project will result in any sort of debris or a mess of any other sort, the estimate should explain if the roofing company is responsible for the cleanup and removal.
- Roof Estimate Materials. The best roofers are willing to explain the type of shingles, flashing, underlayment and ventilation that will be used in the project in extensive detail within the estimate. This information should be highly specific.For example, it should explain the thickness of the underlayment, the locations of the flashing, the type of sealant for areas that mandate waterproofing (nail holes, flashing etc.) and the sizes of the fasteners and nails that will be used for the project. Even the brand of the products that will be used for your roofing project should be noted.
- Full Description of Work. They should also be specific about the work that is going to be done much like with the roof materials. This way you both are on the same page for the work being performed on your new roof.
- Guarantees and Expectations of Work. Within the estimate for your roof replacement, a section should be included that discusses workmanship guarantees, materials guarantees, and cleanup expectations.
- Warranty. The warranties of the workmanship and materials must be presented down to the finest details in the estimate. In general, limited lifetime warranties will have excellent protection during the initial years of the roof’s lifespan and be subsequently pro-rated after a certain number of years. For the most part, a lifetime warranty is generally considered to be half a century. The estimate should state whether the warranty is transferable to a new owner of the property in the event that you decide to sell your home. The ability to transfer the warranty on the roof and workmanship will be a helpful selling point.
- Insurance and Licensing Information. Proof of the roofing company’s license, liability insurance, and workers’ compensation insurance should be provided in the roof estimate. There should be a lien release that provides you with protection against liability in the event that the roofer does not pay the subcontractors or those who provide the roofing materials for your roofing repairs or replacement. If a contractor cannot provide insurance and licensing information DO NOT sign a contract with them!
- Provisions in a Roof Estimate. The estimate must include provisions for add-ons or order changes that have the potential to spur additional charges.
- A Means of Exit. Every roof estimate should have a well-defined termination clause. This clause should explain the exact reasons why the contractor or you can terminate the agreement without any sort of penalty if the terms of the contract are violated.
If a roofing contractor offers to waive or reduce your deductible DO NOT sign the contract! It will place you in violation of the law.
What Additional Questions Should You Ask?
Sometimes it’s hard to know what questions you should ask about your estimate. Not everyone getting roof repairs or roof replacement is a roofing expert. Below are some questions that your roofing contractor should be able to answer before you sign:
- Does the estimate include tax?
- Are they are looking at the entire roofing project or just quoting the shingles or tiles? (This could be why the quote is low.)
- What is the process if they find more damage than was originally found during the inspection?
- Do you get to keep the extra shingles or tiles for repairs?
- Who is responsible for the cost of damage incurred to your house and/or landscaping during the installation?
- How long have they been in business?
- Do they have references and/or examples of similar roof replacement installations?
- What is their safety record?
- If you are still unclear about your warranty, make sure to ask more questions about what your warranty includes.
About Elevated Roofing:
Elevated Roofing provides the assistance you need to repair roofing problems quickly and easily or provide full roof replacement. If you are looking for a Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney area roofing company, take a look at our website to learn about the services we offer or call (469) 305-0010 today to schedule a free roof inspection.
Roofing Repair Frisco TX
Elevated Roofing, LLC
15222 King Road, Suite 402
Frisco, Texas 75034